How about a holiday that strikes the perfect balance between art, nature, good food and hair-raising fun? While it may sound impossible to find a place that meets (and exceeds) all of these diverging expectations, you’re in luck: Holland has everything you’re looking for. What’s more, the research portion of your trip just got significantly easier, thanks to The Culture Trip’s infographic. We’ve condensed its take-away advice for you, making your getaway to the land of tulips, cheese, windmills and clogs easy as pie (which is also delicious in Holland, by the way). Have a look!
What You’ll Need
Before you jet off on your trip, make sure you’ve packed those essential, irreplaceable basics, such as your passport! (If you don’t hold an EU passport and/or are staying for a prolonged period of time, be sure to check whether or not you’ll need a visa to enter the country.) In addition to having appropriate identification on you, it’s wise to have Euros – the local currency – handy when you arrive. Be aware that it’s usually more expensive to exchange your money at airports, so aim to go to a local bureau before beginning your travels.
If you’re hoping to earn some brownie points, it doesn’t hurt to learn a few Dutch phrases that you can use during your stay. Although almost everyone speaks English in the Netherlands, why not go the extra mile and charm the locals? I’ll help you get started: “Hello” is “Hallo” and “Thank you” is “Dank je”. Not too difficult, huh?
Where to Go
Too often people assume that, once they’ve seen Amsterdam, they’ve seen it all. Luckily, The Culture Trip’s travel guide is here to topple this false assumption: its map of the Netherlands is peppered with worthwhile attractions that lie all across the country. Along with familiarising yourself with the country’s most famous gems, such as Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum, why not venture off the beaten track and get your adrenaline fix at Biddinghuizen’s fun-filled theme park, stroll among the beautiful tulips at Keukenhof in Lisse, or discover Kinderdijk’s windmills? When you take the road less travelled, you’ll realise that there’s so much outside of Amsterdam that makes a holiday in Holland unforgettable.
Before You Go
Are you sold on a trip to the Netherlands? Not so fast! In addition to preparing your travel documents, exchanging your money, buying converters and brushing up on your Dutch, you’ll get the most out of your experience if you familiarise yourself with the country’s past. If you’re a history buff, sink your teeth into The Assault, a Dutch novel by Harry Mulisch, or into the film Riphagen, both of whose chilling accounts of Holland during World War II were lauded both domestically and internationally.
Alternatively, you could tap your foot along to a memorable beat by listening to the Neutral Milk Hotel’s song about Anne Frank, entitled Holland, 1945. Although these activities may sound a bit grim, you’ll find that they give you a valuable perspective on this country’s turbulent past, which will undoubtedly come in handy when you uncover its cultural gems.
If you’re ready for the trip of a lifetime (pun intended…), don’t wait – the Netherlands’ multifaceted masterpieces await!